Sunday, November 27, 2011

November 27 Centennial

A hundred years ago today, November 27, my grandparents, Tom Goff and Mary Lane were married. It wasn't a big affair with many guests invited. Not even in a church. In fact the Anglican minister travelled out from town to perform the service. It happened at the home of Arthur and Daisy Nevard, also known as "Winstanley Grove". Not too surprisingly, Arthur and Daisy were the witnesses who signed the register.
If it was a typical Sask. winter they would have travelled the 3 miles by horse and sleighs.
The choice of location I am guessing had something to do with Arthur and Tom being neighbours and friends since they met up not long after coming to Canada to try homesteading. Being situated only 3 miles apart and coming from "the old country", England, they had common interests.
Not much remains of Winstanley Grove today. A hole in the ground surrounded by rotting logs and the remains of a rusty wood-burning stove marks the spot where my grandparents married a hundred years ago today.
This photo of them is from 1951.

  Winstanley Grove  photos from a few years ago.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Election Day On The Farm

More from the journals of Bill Nevard
1938, November 22
Municipal election day. Dad and both Uncles walked over to Hobetzeders to vote in the morning and heard that a car would come after mother and aunt Alice but it did not come. So I walked there and got my vote cast at ten minutes to 5. Bill Peake was the D.R.O.. I saw Mr. and Mrs. Hobetzeder, Grace, Jack Goff , Karl Miller, Manuel and August Zielke. Uncle Arthur was down here in the evening to find out about going to Lipton.
November 23
Dad and Uncle Arthur went to Lipton and Uncle Arthur got 25 bushels of relief feed oats. Uncle Horrie would have gone but Roy was not feeling well so he stayed home to do the chores. I trimmed Firelight's front hooves, caught Topsy and Gleam , getting water for the house and stock.
It was mild today and snow melting. I only got the 3 cows in tonight. Dad and Uncle Horrie brought some relief canned goods home.
Mr. Fisher was re-elected as reeve with a majority of 40. L. Barkwell re-elected to the council. Chas. Bull and Chas. Hook are the two new councillors. Dr. Griggs went to Silver Birches tonight and put them under quarantine until Dec. 7. Roy , Joy and Donald have chicken pox. Bud came here tonight to say that another car of relief spuds is in Lipton. He is living with Bill Miller just now and helping him bore wells.
Bill with team of horses .

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Horace Nevard Joins the CEF

CEF, the Canadian Expeditionary Force as the army was known at the time. My grandfather, Horace Nevard was 31  years old when he joined up in April of 1916. He survived some of the big battles of the first world war and was always willing to talk about his army experiences to those who would listen.
He had been in Canada for almost ten years working at establishing a homestead farm on NW24-24-14 since leaving his home town of Lexden, Essex, U.K. Through those ten years he had kept in regular contact with Alice Hall through letters. Maybe it was a letter like this one from Alice that helped inspire him to join the army.

Grove Farm
Feb. 3, 1916

My Dear Horrie
I was so pleased to receive your nice long letter today as it did seem such a terrible long while since I heard from you. I was afraid you were ill again with shingles or something, so  I was very pleased to hear you were quite well. I expect the mails get delayed as it was more than three weeks from the time you posted it before it got to Saxmundham.
There has been three more Zeppelin raids over England lately. Last Monday night there was six Zeppelins over  and there was 54 peoople killed and 63 injured. I don't think they were very near here but I heard the explosion of a bomb once only it was a long way off. I expect it was at Norwich as they went there. I wonder when this dreadful war will be over.
I think I told you that we had a letter from Herbert before christmas and we have had a postcard from him since Christmas and he was quite well and still in France. I expect you have heard from Emily about your Grandmother's death. She died on Jan. 8th. I have not seen Louie since then as I have not been to Sternfield but Dick told us about it. Thank you for your good wishes for my birthday.Louie sent me three handkerchiefs for my birthday and Mother gave me a nice pair of suede gloves. We have had a lot of windy weather here lately and there has been a big tree blown down up the roadway. I hope you are all quite well and also little Dick. We will soon be a year old won't he? Does he look anything like Ernie, his brother did at that age? I think Mary said he has blue eyes and fair hair.
Now  my dearest Horrie I don't think I have any more news this time so I will close my letter as it is bedtime past nine o'clock. With love to all and my best truest and fondest love to you my dearest Horrie, I remain your everloving Alice. xxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Forestry Battalion

Remembrance Day
As we approach November 11th  Arthur Nevard, my grandfather's brother   joined the CEF (Canadian Expeditionary Force) on August 14 of 1916. According to his attestation paper he was 41 years old. Rather ancient in comparison to the average recruit in that war. No doubt he wanted to do his part to defend the home land as reports of the effects of the war in the U.K. reached all the way out here to his little homestead in Sask. Arthur's original home in Lexden , Essex, U.K. that he had not seen since he left it in  1903 must have seemed a long way off. Now he was prepared to leave his recently established farm homestead, his wife and job in the city of Regina to do his part by joining the Canadian army.
Arthur was taken on the 235th Forestry Battalion and after some basic training at Camp Hughes he sailed on the S.S. Scandinavian Sept. 11, 1916 from Halifax harbour reaching Liverpool, England eleven days later . Many Canadians who might have been ineligible for front line duties were able to participate in the Forestry Battalion since it was well away from the front lines. The army needed timber for various purposes including re-inforcing the trenches. They also needed men to harvest it This would be the Forestry Battalion
It is interesting to read Arthur's military record details. Complete physical details including height , 5 foot 8 inches, complete xray pictures of his teeth. Arthur did his part and saw the end of the war, was discharged and sailed back to his home in Canada to resume his farming activities at Winstanley Grove for many more years to come.